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  • 130. Conscientious Objectors in Wartime and The Death Penalty and The USA and England

Conscientious Objectors in Wartime and The Death Penalty and The USA and England

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  • Author: Richard Michael Lamb


The role of the USA States who still carry out the Death Sentence for Murder and the “muscle” this generates to USA foreign policy worldwide, particularly in trouble spots requiring US intervention.


Those who contradict Capital Punishment for murder are in effect refusing to countenance the taking of human life in any circumstances. The Wartime conscientious objectors in the two World Wars were saying they could not morally take another person’s life be he friend or foe. Their stand was accepted as objectors and they did non-combatant duties in England. Capital Punishment if restored will be commanded by the High Court Judiciary in the Crown Court according to criminal law and practice. The conscientious objector will disagree with these Judicial Executions but he is not being asked to consent as he was when the King commanded his military service in the two World Wars. Essentially, he is free to dissent as the Catholics and dissenters opted out of the Tests Act and the Established Church in centuries gone by. The abhorrence of a life taken in war or by sentence of the court is the basis for this objection conscientious.


In both World Wars, particularly the Great War, there were many Padres: German, British, French, Austrian, Russian, Belgian and Italian who ministered to the officers and soldiers trained to inflict loss of life on their enemy. These Padres would pray for the dead and dying on both sides but they made no objection to the waging of war itself. Their Chaplaincy Services were also sought for those guilty of desertion and sentenced by Court Martial to be shot by firing squad in the Great War.


Lastly, traditionally, in peacetime the clergy would minister to those sentenced to death by the Criminal Courts at or around the time of their execution. Everyone so sentenced had the right to clergy. These priests in Holy orders did not let down these condemned men in years past.


Each funeral: Humanist, Islamic, Jewish, Hindu or Christian is taken in that proper liturgy lead by clerics and Men of God or Humanists in our own epoch.


Clearly some, if not all, of these clerics and Humanists will now argue against the death penalty, but they are closer to these deaths and the repercussions than many. In years gone by most Christian Clergy supported the death Sentence without doubt. Those priests could not honour God if they opposed the sentence of death of these appointed Judges of the Crown in England and Wales. To officiate as clergy at an English hanging required allegiance to the King or Queen and acquiescence in the final sentence. You cannot help anyone in this world by denying reality and going against the Judge’s ruling. The clergy, if worth their salt, would have always upheld the rule of law and thereby the Judiciary and their decisions. The condemned man should not be mislead. They would have said to themselves, “My duty to him demands sincerity in his hour of need.”


We now live in peacetime with no European death sentence regime and Judicial Executions in the West (military or civilian by a criminal court) are unheard of save in the USA. There is no drive or aim for conscientious objectors to pursue now – a life is not often taken by the police even in the USA. We have almost abolished war and there is no conscription to speak of. How do matters really stand?


The USA is the lead Country in the West and Britain, like it or not, stands alongside those North Americans, even if our leaders do not support the ultimate sentence imposed in several of her States. The USA is prepared to retain, activate and implement these Death Sentences by approval of its Constitutional Court: The Supreme Court in Washington, USA namely that country’s Capital State. By virtue of that Death Sentence regime at home the USA reinforces its diplomatic, political and military arms overseas. Their determination to properly punish the Murderer within some of their States, in particular by execution, demonstrates their firmness of purpose in not tolerating oppression in foreign lands where their intervention is called for. Peoples abroad, and those bent on insurrection and creating mayhem in those countries, take note not only of the power of the military, political, financial and diplomatic arms of the USA, but also her resolution to exact the final punishment on murderers within certain of her own States jurisdictions if truly convicted and sentenced to death. Americans believe in America because of the freedom of debate in that land. That belief is supported above all other nations by England and Wales: hence the Iraq War and Afghanistan. This alliance in spirit and reality is perceived by certain others, particularly in Central Asia, opposed to the Anglo-American axis to be a threat. Thus these rebels and troublemakers target the USA and English private citizens abroad above all others. They will never release an Englishman or American as this Anglo-American Entente is anathema to such turncoats and wanton irregulars. They will do all in their power to enlist American and English support then turn their guns on the English and Americans and their loyal following e.g. Sadam Hussein a gunman and a former so called ally of the USA and likewise another turncoat Osama Bin Laden (terrorist leader) both deceased, - Sadam by Judicial hanging in Baghdad, Iraq. George Bush’s tenacity was vital to that correct outcome for Sadam and he a Governor of Texas which State still has the Death Penalty, by lethal injection, carried out as required.

8. Conclusion

The modern military conscientious objector has become the “abolitionist” of old, as they were called, opposed to the imposition of the Death Penalty. However, there is no debate in England about this Restoration. Conscience has become meaningless – it has withered on the vine. Conscience votes in the House of Commons are pointless – no one defends hanging. The last vote was in 1998 a year after the Human Rights Act was enacted in 1997. Unfortunately in England and Wales the political, legal, ecclesiastical, media, academic teaching and Civil Service arms of the establishment, almost without exception, oppose Restoration. There is no proper interaction yet a minority of the public come out in support of that Restoration and many more are silent believers. Most of the outspoken are conscientious objectors in the Human Rights lobby. There is no “army” – there are no “officers”, we are defenceless in the face of implacability and moral weakness. We have been emasculated by the EU and its Human Rights to permit it to sweep away any vestiges of our history, independence, values and autonomy. The Death Penalty is quite simply taboo and is not on the menu and as things stand will never appear on it. The Maitre d’Hotel will lift up his hands in horror and exclaim, “C’est pas possible!” The Death Penalty, which was the essence of our High Court of Justice in the Central Criminal Court, formerly the Old Bailey, has been forfeited – we have lost a pearl beyond price, but the search will go on – have no doubt. The people are beginning to find their voice. The USA will not abandon its death penalty and her old ally of two World Wars.

Vive L’Etats-Unis et L’Angleterre!

Correction and Clarification to Conscientious Objector paper released on 13th November 2014

In Paragraph one first sentence of this paper I state, “Those who contradict Capital Punishment for murder are in effect refusing to countenance the taking of life in any circumstances.”
This rhetorical statement omits the example of the life taken in the prevention of crime by law enforcement agents, quite lawfully.
No right-minded man will deny the police this duty and right. Thus I must add a proviso to the sentence referred to that even an “abolitionist” who opposes Restoration of the Death Penalty will not object to a life taken by the police or law enforcement Agents in the course of their duties to save human life or lives under the Laws of England and Wales.
Therefore, I clarify and correct what I have written in this paper in the interests of fairness of debate: Even the “abolitionist” and his successors do not deny the force of this proviso I mention at c) above.
Finally, I apologise for my initial omission and overstatement and this apology is uttered in the interests of those who oppose that Death Sentence which I argue for its return to our land.